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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Knights' season comes to a close as coach Lancaster ends great career

Sunday, March 2, 2008


Times Sports Editor

MARTINSVILLE -- The Northview Knights were unable to duplicate an earlier season victory against Terre Haute North on Saturday evening and with a 40-37 sectional title loss to the Patriots, a season and a career came to a close.

Northview coach Mitch Lancaster (center) addresses his team during the final seconds of Saturday's sectional championship game against Terre Haute North.
Northview's student section cheers on their team during Saturday's sectional championship against Terre Haute North.
Coach Mitch Lancaster announced to his team following the game that he would calling an end to a career that saw 254 career wins with Rockville and the Knights.

"Terre Haute North is very deserving," said Lancaster of the Patriots championship. "But I couldn't have gone out with a better team, a more competitive team or a team with more togetherness. I'm so proud of the year they had and the way they fought."

The Knights indeed battled tooth-and-nail all game long against a Patriots team that featured a great deal more size in 6'6 Thomas Anderson and 6'7 Justin Gant.

Clint Reynolds (No. 25) and teammates Zach Kirby (No. 14) and Jered Timm (right) react following Northview's loss.
Gant got the Patriots out and running early with seven of his 12 points in the early minutes of the game. North led 7-0 quickly to force a timeout by coach Lancaster.

Resilient all year long, Northview battled its way back into the game with a 3-pointer from Austin Akers to trail 13-7 after one quarter.

Northview made adjustments to slow the post game by Gant and Anderson, but Cory Hemmings stepped forward for North to hit four-of-five attempts from the field during the first half to give the Patriots a 22-13 lead at the midway point.

"Their size really hurt us," said Lancaster. "Their ball handling has really improved over the season."

The second half, not surprisingly, was a war from the beginning.

Tyler Coltharp scored to get things started for the Knights and Caleb Whitman followed by knocking home a 3-pointer and two free throws to get Northview back to within 22-20.

But North rallied back with two free throws by Anderson and a bucket from Friday evening's hero, Chris O'Leary. Anderson then went baseline for another score and the lead grew back to 30-22.

Heading to the fourth quarter, Northview closed the gap again with a jumper from Jered Timm, who followed with a steal and a lay-in. Akers hit a free throw to send the game into the fourth quarter trailing just 30-27.

Midway through the final period the Knights looked like they might finally get over the hump on a drive by Akers and a score from Timm hanging in the lane. The Knights were within 35-33 and then 36-35 following Coltharp's eighth-point of the game.

Hemmings was fouled with 31 seconds remaining in the game, but hit both shots for the Patriots to give them a 38-35 lead.

Coltharp scored again off a dish by Akers with 17 seconds left to narrow the gap to one at 38-37. Hemmings was fouled again, but once more hit both charity tosses with just 12.3 remaining on the clock.

Northview called a final timeout to set up the final shot, but an off balance 3-pointer was no good at the buzzer.

"In 17 years I've loved a lot of teams, but this one was special," said Lancaster. "I'll miss the competitive nature of coaching, but I'll be their biggest fan in the future."

Also coming to a close were the high school careers of Timm, Zach Kirby, Whitman, Keaton Robertson, Coltharp and Nick Lancaster."

While at the helm for the Knights, Lancaster was 96-45 and led the squad to a sectional title in the 2003-04 season in which Northview reached the regional championship game. The squad also won back-to-back Pizza Hut Wabash Valley Tourney championships. Lancaster won two-thirds of his games as a head coach, compiling a 254-133 record in 17 seasons, six with the Knights. This year's squad finishes with a 14-8 overall record.

Terre Haute North advances to face Evansville Reitz on Saturday morning at 10:30 a.m. in the Seymour Regional.

Class 4A Martinsville Sectional

Championship game

Northview (37)

Timm 3-5 2-2 8, Whitman 3-5 2-2 9, Akers 3-13 3-4 10, Coltharp 4-5 0-1 8, N.Lancaster 0-2 0-0 0, Reynolds 1-3 0-0 2. Totals: 14-33 7-9 37.

T.H. North (40)

Gant 5-7 2-3 12, Anderso 3-9 3-4 9, Harrison 0-3 0-0 0, O'Leary 2-3 0-0 5, Hemmings 4-5 4-5 13, Gabbard 0-0 1-2 1. Totals: 14-27 10-14 40.

T.H. North139810-40

3-point fieldgoals -- Nv 2-11 (Akers 1-6, Whitman 1-1, N.Lancaster 0-2, Reynolds 0-2), THN 2-2 (Hemmings 1-1, O'Leary 1-1). Total Rebounds -- Nv 19 (Coltharp 5, Akers 5), THN 19 (Gant 7, Anderson 6). Total Fouls -- Nv 14, THN 10. Turnovers -- Nv 11, THN 10.

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Coach Lancaster, As a supporter of Northview Athletics I cannot say thank you enough for all that you have done. Northview Basketball will move on but it will not be the same without you on the bench. Take this time to get healthy and enjoy the additional time with your family.

-- Posted by smooth on Mon, Mar 3, 2008, at 11:30 AM

Is it true that he is going to go to Bloomington and work at I U?


-- Posted by madmom61 on Mon, Mar 3, 2008, at 11:59 AM

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